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RAP opportunity at Air Force Science and Technology Fellowship Program     AF STFP

Synthesis of Low Temperature Polymers for Extreme Environments


Materials & Manufacturing, RX/Soft Matter Materials

opportunity location
13.25.04.C0926 Wright-Patterson AFB, OH 454337817


name email phone
Ryan Christopher Selhorst 513-292-7542


We invite applications at the Polymer and Responsive Materials and Processing Team at Wright Patterson Air Force Base (WPAFB), OH. The successful candidate will join a team of diverse and multi-disciplinary scientists with a broad range of skills from synthetic chemistry, nanomaterial development, characterization, and processing and development of new technologies.

Our focus in the Polymer and Responsive Material Team at AFRL is to synthesize new materials that can withstand the extreme environments experienced by aerospace vehicles and devices in the arctic. This requires polymers that maintain their viscoelastic properties at extremely low temperatures (<-100 °C). As such, the exploration of new materials beyond polyolefins, perfluoronated hydrocarbons, and pure siloxane-based scaffolds is critical and necessitates the development of new and less understood chemistries. Noting the chemistry inherent to polysiloxanes has enabled low-temperature polymer development, we seek to explore polymers derived from other group 14 elements (e.g., polygermanoxanes & polystannanes). While the most recent efforts focus on caged structures, linear polymers and copolymers with the ability to exert control over the polymerization (i.e., living polymerizations) are desired as well as the synthesis of functional monomers for polymerization to generate a library of new materials prime for classic polymer chemistry investigations for low temperature applications. Other polymer behavior may be inherent to these structures including stimuli-responsiveness and self-healing capabilities that have thusfar gone unstudied. Candidates should have strong synthesis skills especially pertaining to chain-growth and controlled polymerizations, organic separations, and purifications. Furthermore, a knowledge of a wide array of thermal, spectroscopic, and microscopic characterization techniques is preferred. Lastly, U.S. Citizenship is required for this opportunity.

key words
Polymer;Synthesis;Organometallic chemistry;Germanium;Tg;Brittle Temperature;Functionalization;Anionic Polymerization;Low Temperature;Reconfigurable Materials


Citizenship:  Open to U.S. citizens
Level:  Open to Postdoctoral and Senior applicants


Base Stipend Travel Allotment Supplementation
$95,000.00 $5,000.00

Experience Supplement:
Postdoctoral and Senior Associates will receive an appropriately higher stipend based on the number of years of experience past their PhD.

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